Heinrich, Luján Welcome $45 Million In Federal Investments To Boost Growth Of Santa Teresa Port Of Entry

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) are welcoming $45 million in federal investments from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to develop an approximately six-mile, four-lane highway connecting the Santa Teresa Port of Entry with State Road 273 in Sunland Park.

“For years, I’ve been proud to work with business and community leaders to strengthen New Mexico’s ports of entry,” said Heinrich, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “Together, we have worked to build public-private partnerships and secure millions of dollars in federal funds to facilitate lawful international trade at places like the Santa Teresa Port of Entry. I’m proud to welcome these federal investments that will build on this work and expand services and capabilities at Santa Teresa. I will continue fighting for federal funding that allows New Mexico’s border businesses and communities to thrive.”

“The Santa Teresa Port of Entry is a major economic driver for New Mexico — supporting jobs and economic growth across our southern border,” said Luján. “Recently, I toured this port of entry where I learned more about the current needs to facilitate travel and trade. I know that this strong federal investment will help do exactly that.”

The new roadway will:

  • significantly reduce drive times to and from the City of El Paso and major highways – Interstate 10 and Loop 375;
  • address congestion in the Borderplex by attracting increased private vehicle and commercial traffic to Santa Teresa;
  • create a comprehensive and efficient transportation network in the region that will support economic growth; and
  • improve connectivity between major ports in southern New Mexico and far west Texas.

The new connector highway will be owned and maintained by the New Mexico Department of Transportation.

The $45 million grant is awarded through the Infrastructure for Rebuilding America Program (INFRA). Senators Heinrich and Luján have previously led bipartisan calls for DOT to adopt an initiative to make access to INFRA funding more equitable for all states.

Senators Heinrich and Luján also secured $500,000 in congressionally directed spending for the New Mexico Border Authority in Fiscal Year 2022 Appropriations. This funding will support the completion of a feasibility study to modernize the Santa Teresa Port of Entry.

In the 116th Congress, Senator Heinrich led legislation to reauthorize the Donations Acceptance Program that assists in infrastructure and facility improvements at the Santa Teresa Port of Entry.



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